Holiday weekends

Holiday weekends bring in huge crowds, especially to the poker room and Friday was right up there with all the noise and confusion that goes along with the tidal wave of humanity flooding in to take a seat and get on a list. There was a game in Bobby’s Room, perhaps two, but I didn’t even look in that direction since I wasn’t going to be dealing in there.

I ended up in the no hassle, no frazzle section of the room and just went through the night. I signed the E/O list (not the ‘play’), figuring I might be out by about 10 or 11 because I was #2 on the list. Not even close. I worked until almost 2 a.m. Ouch! When you haven’t sat in the dealer’s seat for some months, it gets pretty brutal on the body.

Lance was in rare form in $30-60 game and he did his ‘deal me out’ impression again after I figured out who he was mimicking. It was Dorothy. She’s been playing in the room a lot lately and she has this thing with dealers where she will pay ‘time,’ even pay both of her blinds, and if she hasn’t made a draw/hand or picked up a playable hand within a few minutes of my/your deal, she leans back in her chair, folds her arms across her chest, and grumps, “Deal me out! You never deal me anything.”

Andrew and Glen were in this game also. I watched Glen carve off A-A with a pair of treys – heads-up. They had a slight raising war on the Flop and Glen connected with a trey on the turn. The Flop was three hearts and both players held a heart…how do you like that for snagging the perfect card?

The only time I thought I would die laughing, during the shift, was when I landed in a $15-30 game and the player in the 10s was so drunk he could barely sit in his chair. His chips were in a huge pile in front of him, his bottle of beer was out in my field of action where I had to lean to deal around it, and he was non-stop talk about how well he played, even when he was drunk. He also slowed the game down horribly but everyone seemed to be patient because they were the hawks…waiting…

At one point, the 10s told me he was really drunk, that’s why it would take him a moment to look at his hand and decide what he wanted to do. A few minutes later, he folded three weeks before it was his turn. I put my arm out in front of him and said, “You are going to have to act in turn and pay attention to the game. If you don’t, I am going to give you shit!”

The 3 and 4s busted out laughing and almost applauded. Amazingly, I got a reaction that I didn’t expect from the 10s. His face had a blank look for about 30 seconds, and then everything registered, “You are the best dealer in here. I really like you.”


We exchanged names. He’s Murray. And at one point I even asked him if he wanted water or coffee…nope, he wanted another beer. I left him shortly after that.


Our little $2-5 NLH game has changed. The buy-in used to be $200 min/max; nothing in between. Now it is $200-500. Of course you can add to your stack at any time. The world of NLH is growing up – more games, higher buy-ins, good or bad, it’s taking over the poker scene.


I have to chuckle over people and their attitude that since we are in Vegas, profanity at the table really doesn’t matter because obviously since we live in ‘Sin City’ no one here is ever offended by anything and we are all gutter pigs just floating through the sewage and slime that rolls down from the rest of the world as they arrive in droves to unleash their hidden passions, over indulge on every thing that can be jammed into their body (including eye candy), experience everything their senses can handle, and expel all of their body fluids in every direction before they leave town to return to their idyllic little church going community where nothing ever happens other than bingo on a Saturday night. Umnhhh! That was a mouthful. But this is the way it goes down. I’m playing in a $4-8 game a week or so ago and a rather healthy looking, young lad lost a hand (not to me). He exclaimed, “Mother Fucker!”

The dealer cautioned him on his language and he snorted, “This is Vegas! I can say anything I want!”

The dealer was pleasantly firm, “No…you cannot.”

No more potty mouth bounced out of the lad. A lot of men are offended by foul language and it’s not just a female POV.

I once read a sign in an office – the office was at the bottom of the stairs in a dark hole without an escape hatch other than the stairs. The sign read, “Profanity is the crutch of the inarticulate Mother Fucker!”

How twue, how twue, silly wabbit. Every once in awhile when I’m dealing and someone blows out with their string of profanity (especially higher limit where it’s the norm), I’d like to pull that sign out of my pocket and set it on the table. I know it just wouldn’t go over well…and I don’t have the sign. Besides, a lot of people don’t even know what inarticulate means.


I didn’t try to put a ‘pan game plays’ together for Saturday. I’m out of steam on being the social director right now…and tired of looking at poker hands.

About Linda R. Geenen

The easiest way to begin is to start at the beginning. But where is that? At what point does one suddenly decide they are going to spend the rest of their life involved in the intricate art of the dance? What is the art of the dance? A game about people - played with a deck of cards. Poker! I stepped into the poker world in 1980 in Missoula, Montana. I didn't know anything about poker, couldn't tell you what the difference was between a bet and raise, or if a straight beat a flush. I had three boys to feed, needed a job and a dealing spot was open in one of the local bars. I played my first hand of poker in a 5 Card Stud game (with the help of one of my bosses) and that was it! I was hooked. I lived, breathed, slept, dreamed, ate, and talked poker. I eventually ran my own games (licensed by the County) in several different bars in Missoula, and at one point, managed the games in the bar where I started my first dealing job. In 1987 I traveled from Montana to Nevada to deal major poker tournaments, returning to Montana at the end of each one. In 1989, I opened The Mirage – along with 6,400 other people. In 1993, I moved to Gulfport, Mississippi, and opened Grand Casinos Poker Room, returning a year later to Las Vegas and The Mirage. In 1998 I opened Bellagio - along with over 9,000 other employees. In 2003, I dealt the final table of the Aruba Ultimate Bet Poker Classic event. Hey…I’m on TV! I had the privilege of being chosen as the dealer in the Howard Lederer videos that have been released on No Limit Holdem. I play poker on a regular basis and I deal to every name brand player that is still above ground and breathing air, the elite, the freaks, the ne’er do wells, the rich, the poor, the illiterate, the educated, the beautiful, the ugly, the superstitious, the rational, the sane, and the insane. Perhaps I am the one that is insane but if I am, I fit right into the game plan. Five nights a week I walk into the greatest, social melting pot known to mankind. I no longer dream about it but the art of the dance is prevalent in everything I do - see you there!
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